A year removed from a Class 3A semifinal appearance, the Plainview football team is looking to reconstruct a winner.
With the departure of a senior class filled with contributors, it is up to head coach Chris Berus to find the new pieces of the puzzle, a task he has put himself to in this week’s summer camp drills.
With the second of three days of work under his belt, Berus feels good about what he’s working with, but stressed the importance of not overwhelming the new players he needs to rely on for the upcoming season.
“We’ve got so many young kids right now, and our job as coaches is keeping the pace of practice up with our players,” Berus said. “We’ve got as many tools as last year to be good, but we need to make sure our pace matches our understanding.”
For Berus and the staff, that means taking a little extra time in drills, explaining nuances that his older, more experienced players have gone through thousands of times.
Chase Brooks, a senior wide receiver and defensive back, has seen the improvement in the younger players and realizes the importance of their emergence to the team’s success.
“You can definitely tell the young kids are stepping up,” Brooks said. “I definitely think that everybody is responding really well, and the juniors will step up and fill some roles.”
The roles that need to be filled are not left exclusively to the players. Plainview has welcomed two new assistant coaches, Colin Steverson and Phillip Tweedy, to the fold.
“They came in and we were messing around with them after the first day,” senior James Bowker said. “They already relate to us and I feel like they know what they’re doing.”
Berus has been especially pleased with the energy his new coaches have shown on the field.
“The more enthusiastic your coaches are, the more enthusiastic the players are during practice,” Berus said. “We’ve got those guys, and it’s exciting for me.”
With today the final practice of the summer before the month-long wait for fall camp, Berus’ only contact with his players will be during summer weightlifting workouts.
However, he is hoping the mental edge needed to contribute on the field is something that can continue to be honed even off the field.
“It’s going to be the attitude we bring to workouts every day,” Berus said. “Everything we do here is significant. The next month, it’s back in the weight room and the track.”